Pakistan's unseeded player makes biggest upset in international squash event
LAHORE - Unseeded Moqaddas Ashraf stunned top seed Madina Zafar in the quarterfinal of the Faletti’s International Women’s Squash Championship 2018, while all the top seeds breezed into the semifinals here at the Punjab Squash Complex on Monday.
Moqaddas of Pakistan proved too hot for compatriot Madina Zafar as she tamed the top seed by 3-2 in a marathon match of 51 minutes. Madina was off to flying start as she won the first game 11/7. The highly-charged second game saw both the players busy in playing long rallies, classic shots and matching the speed of each other, thus leveling the score at 12/12. Moqaddas then utilized his experience and skills to tame Madina 14/12 to take the game.
Top seed Madina then put in a great performance and made a strong comeback to win the third game 11/6 and was enjoying lead in the third game, but Moqaddas bounced back in style to first level the score at 6-6 and won the next 5 points in row to win the game 11/7. In the fifth and decisive game, Moqaddas never allowed her opponent to play freely and kept her under pressure to win the game 11/7, thus booked berth in the semifinal.
It was a luckless day for the top notch of the competition as another upset was also witnessed when unseeded French player Melissa Alves shocked second seed Farah Momen of Egypt by 3-0. The French player showed outstanding squash skills, stamina and pace to outclass the Egyptian by 11/3 in the first game. She continued her supremacy in the second game as well and took it 11/4 while in the third game, the French players had faced some resistance before winning it 11/8, thus registered a convincing victory in 19 minutes.
Third seed Menna Nasser of Egyptian overpowered eighth seed Riffat Khan of Pakistan by 3-0. The Egyptian had to struggle hard in only first game, which she won by 11/8 while in the second game, she only conceded three points and conceded just one point in the third game to win the quarterfinal in just 17 minutes and also earned place in the semifinal.
In the fourth quarterfinal, fourth seed Farida Mohamed of Egypt outclassed Areezosadat Mousavizadeh of Iran. The Egyptian fourth seed dominated the match right from the word it go as she took the first game 11/5, won the second game with utmost easy by 11/2 and took the third one by 11/5 to register an impressive victory in 24 minutes.
On Tuesday, the first semifinal of the championship will be contested between France’s Melissa Alves and Egypt’s Menna Nasser while local player Moqaddas Ashraf will face the challenge of Egypt’s Farida Mohamed in the second semifinal. The men’s quarterfinals were in progress here at the four-walled glass court installed at Faletti’s Hotel.